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Discussion Starter #1
i might as well kill two birds with one stone, im a 21 year old former bmw tech. ive been around cars all my life. in 10th grade i started working at a bmw dealership as a tech part time while attending a trade school and high school at the same time. i graduated with 5 ase certifications but recently lost my job because of illness.

my car is a 50 desoto, soon to be rat rod. im going all black, no chrome, red wheels and white walls. the seats and head liner are staying stock and ratty including the 9 or 49 expired peanuts in the ashtrey :drunk:

shes got some faimly history. she was baught from a doctor in 51 and used to run the faimly, and the occasional load of moon shine. shes a true blue ridge runner from franklin county, the moon shine capital of the world. she was shot up in the mid 50s and was parked for fear of the revenuers. after that she attended some of the verry first races at starkey speed way what eventually became nascar. ive got pictures and documentations of all of this :thumbup:

in 85 when i was born my grand dad wanted to build it for me so he and my dad went to the field that had now become woods and cut a path to the car. with a tank of gas and a new battery the old girl drove her self to a small garage on the faimly farm. all the major issues were attended to but the project went stail. the car was reassembeled and what was not put back on the car was bagged and tagged in the trunk or back seat.

ive always been around this car, when i was 2 or 3 my grand dad would let me steer it in the field. when i was 8 i used it as my personal go cart even though i could bairly see over the dash i learned to drive on a fluid drive. when i started growing up she sat alown, i would visit her once a year to change the oil and that would always lead to my setting behind the wheel for a few hours day dreaming but that was it. she truly is part of the faimly.

my great uncle died in a tractor accident in 01 and my aunt got remarried recently, her new husband wanted the car for a project. he offered my grand dad 800 cash for the car and was turned down. after 55 years of searving the faimly she was out of a home.

im starting where my great grand dad started in 51 and im documenting every day of this cars life, she done see sand paper with out the camera. heres some of the pictures of how the project is coming.

click to enlarge.

me with her for the first time.



after failing to budge her with a chevy truck and a 487 hp mustang we had to call in the heavy equipment, for 15 bucks she was hauled behind the upper garage. thats my grand dad and dan a good friend who was helping with the move in the foreground.


my grand dad with her for the last time before he handed over the keys.


the trip home

 

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welcome........Don't get me wrong, but a car with that kind of history deserves better than to become a rat rod.........whatever that is............Just my opinion.
 

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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
it will be but cost is a issue. my main idea behind making a rat rod is to get the body stright and driveable. no irreversable dammage is going to be done. im going to do some body work liked frenched lights and a different grill but nothing thats not fixable.

if i can get it running reliable and street legal ill be able to have fun with it while im saving for better things, aint that what roddings about? once i get the money ill replace the seats carpet and headliner and then ill strip the car once more and paint it the origional two tone blue colors then install the chrome.

the only thing that i was thinking about doing thats semi permanent to make it driveable on the interstate is install a modern motor. ive got a 87 grand national with 580 hp that i could get the parts from.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
ok, the next step in my build is frenching the head lights but not doing permanent damage, im going to restore it one of these days after all.

on the desoto the head light is mounded in a cup thats bolted to the out side of the fender, could i unbolt the cup and bolt it on the inside of the fender using longer bolts and spacers and use a sheet metal bracket to hold the trim on like on a factory car? has any body done this before? would it work?
 

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I'd work up the flat 6 that it has, or install an early HEMI, as they bolt up to the fluid drive. for frenched headlights, use a hagen kit, they are a frenched headlight bucket that mounts in the original hole, with no modification
 

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DeStang said:
ok, the next step in my build is frenching the head lights but not doing permanent damage, im going to restore it one of these days after all.

on the desoto the head light is mounded in a cup thats bolted to the out side of the fender, could i unbolt the cup and bolt it on the inside of the fender using longer bolts and spacers and use a sheet metal bracket to hold the trim on like on a factory car? has any body done this before? would it work?
To get more exposure and potential help, you would be ahead to start a new thread in the body section. :cool:
 

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Discussion Starter #10
i got a lead on a 1957 adventurer motor. what will i need to change to put that in the 50? i think the fluid drive will bolt to that motor by what ive herd on this board and others but what else would i have to change?
 

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Your Desoto

Hey kid, don't degrade your ride by referring to it as "RatRod"!
A ratrod is an unsafe pile of crap, there are no other words to describe your thoughts and misunderstanding of this term.
You have a great ride to work with, which in turn can be turned into a very nice custom rod, or you could do a full restoration as a modified runner.
The term "RATROD", is over rated as a period type driver. No such thing in any of the automobile history a period "rat" type driver. Rat is the term used for a very unsafe beat up trashed car or truck which should not be allowed on the street.

Now your Desoto is a perfect specimen that can be chopped, channeled, bagged, and a few other tricks which can be added for a very nice and practical custom sled. With less then $15K, you can actually do a good job in the upgrading of your suspension, drive line and most of the exterior. Worst thing to do is creating an unpleasing POJ/s on the road in the name of RATROD.

Don't this as a bashing young gun, I am all for doing real creative customs on any kind of driver. I have riders as old as 1934 and on up into the 60s', non of them will ever be considered a "RAT", due to one thing, I love my cars and trucks and will never stoop that low to allow them to become a pile of unsafe junk on the road. A poor boys' custom is better then a POS RAT!

Take pride in your Desoto and make your past family proud of that old crate. You never know what they will do if you cross that line.....ghost do talk.
 

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Well said..........I know it's just a phase, but that "Rat Rod " term really gets under my skin................In my mind, you might as well say POS....................
 

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RatRod build

Hey kid, if you are dead set on building so called ratrod, start collecting a mismatch setting of parts. Find a period chassis of the era you wish to represent in your home build. Once you have the chassis and the running gear, clean it all up and service it all with fresh bearings, grease, upgrade the brakes with new slave cylenders, drums and shoes. Get a good running four banger, or an Inline 6 or 8, or a flathead, depending on the year and era.
Next spend the required time needed to clean up a decent cab, body, shell of some sort. Make sure you have seat belts and a working horn, lights, turn signals, wipers, roll-up glass in your windows....etc...etc..etc.... I can get you wire wheels for a reasonable price, mostle Fords if you want some.

Then you will have a period perfect home-built-rod. And then you can actually call it a rat because it was a budget build if all sorts.
Not a perfactly sound driver all butchard up. :thumbup:
 

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DeStang said:
i spent alittle time with ms paint, hows this look for a concept?

OK, now your nose needs a little work, a slight pie cut to smooth the fron and the frenched lights would really make the grade on the custom.
Like I said before, it is not a ratrod, but a sleak custom you are building.
Money can be had to finish the job as well. Start bartering things and trading your time for parts. I found a bit of sweat equity goes a long way in gathering parts. And you would be surprised on how many people who actually could use help around their places for trade in auto parts.
I do it all the time, hell, thats how I have picked upped most my rides.
 

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Frenched Headlights

Where is this Hagen Frenched Headlight Kit available. Someone have an address, phone number, web site ?????

thanks.

nolan1
 
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